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Submission + - "Muthuball": How to Build an NBA Championship Team ( 1

Quillem writes: "Muthu Alagappan, a 5'9" biomechanical engineering undergraduate at Stanford made a presentation at this year's MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference which might well do to basketball what Moneyball did to baseball. His contribution revolves around a topographical analysis of NBA games which contends that there are really 13 positions in basketball — not just five. Besides a rather patronising — but informative — read in "Gentlemen's Quarterly", there are earlier stories over at Wired and NYT blogs. Muthu's talk and slides are also available."

Autralian Mining Companies Increasing Use of UAVs 67

aesoteric writes "Australia's top miners have opened a new front in their march to automation, flying unmanned aerial vehicles in increasing numbers at remote sites across the country. They've been used to inspect a fire-damaged oil rig, perform aerial photography and stockpile surveys. There is also a trend towards non U.S.-built UAVs, due to the lag in receiving export approvals for the aircraft and spare parts."

Comment Re:At the risk of sounding negative ... (Score 1) 193

Well, I'm not talking about eugenics ... hence my use of the quotes around the word guided. I am not insinuating that this is what has happened here with Andraka, but it's definitely a possibility that the parents of kids in science fairs provide a lot of assistance beyond moral support and a suitable environment.

Comment At the risk of sounding negative ... (Score 2) 193

.. from what I have seen of these fairs where kids invent/discover things seemingly beyond their mental, physical or financial means, they are inevitably "guided" by parents who are professionals. In the case of Andraka, his mother appears to be an anaesthetist at a hospital and his father might be an engineer ...

It's nevertheless a commendable result.

Comment Fascinating .. but .. (Score 0, Troll) 307

.. I wish America (and all other non-conformists) would get with the metric standard. Did anyone else sigh at the following statement?

What sets the Fifty apart is its extraordinary scale. Its 14 major structural components, cast in ductile iron, weigh as much as 250 tons each; those yard-thick steel bolts are also 78 feet long; all told, the machine weighs 16 million pounds, and when activated its eight main hydraulic cylinders deliver up to 50,000 tons of compressive force.

According to WP, there are different "tons" out there. The terse "ton" or "tonne" should mean 1000kg everywhere. When used in terms of poundage, the appropriate terms are apparently "short ton" (US, 2000 lb) and "long ton" (UK, 2240 lb).

It makes it all the more annoying when people steeped in science and logic continue to pander to these archaic systems instead of phasing them out :S

Comment Why do intelligent people (continue to) use FB? (Score 3, Insightful) 155

In this information age where data-mining, credit/reputation ratings, etc. are the norm, why do people who are aware of its draconian privacy aspects, potential for misuse and the time sink that it is, continue to use FB? This is a serious 87 billion dollar question.

Comment Re:Lone Wolf and Cub (Score 1) 372

There's also manga for younger children such as Doraemon. If the kid enjoys Spider-Man, then he will surely enjoy Dragon Ball (the manga).

While I'm not sure how well Yotsuba&! will go down with the 3 year old (as it is about the antics of a 5 year old), but it'll make for hilarious reading for the parent (and everybody else). Highly recommended :)

Comment Re:Way too confusing (Score 1) 1264

Most of the software that people use nowadays work within a browser. Setting aside Google Docs, Libreoffice is virtually identical to Office for the rudimentary tasks that most people require it for. Many apps such as Picasa run very well under Wine. It really isn't that much of a problem any more. There are of course many niche apps that might not run, but that is the case with Macs / Windows as well.

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This is clearly another case of too many mad scientists, and not enough hunchbacks.